Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Appointment (02/09/12)
TITLE: Appointed for Wrath
By Edmond Ng
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- For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. (1 Thessalonians 5:9 NIV)
On day one when I arrived for work, I was immediately led to a meeting room for briefing by the human resource and IT department on corporate policies and security. In the afternoon, I was debriefed by my reporting manager what was expected of me, before I was granted a little time to set up my work tools—laptop, network connection, and user accounts to different systems.
On day two, my entire morning was taken up by the manager to explain the scope of work, the immensity of what I should expect upcoming, and the need for me to catch up to speed soonest possible.
“And by the way,” said the manager at the end of her session with me. “I am conducting a training this evening for the advanced users, and I want you to come along.”
“Okay,” I answered reluctantly, for in my thoughts I was wondering how I would be able to cope with advanced learning before I was given the chance to start learning the basics.
The human resource had promised me earlier that the first five days at work would be a breeze, as my priority would be to focus on learning the basics first. Unfortunately that was not the case, and amid the attempt to familiarize myself with the bare elementary concepts through self-taught eLearning in the afternoon, the training in the evening left me with more questions than answers.
Like me, some of us are probably familiar with the demands in the corporate world. It is not unusual for an employee to be expected to perform immediately upon acceptance of appointment. Such an expectation, thankfully, is not the same in the spiritual realm. The Bible puts it clearly that God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ who died for us so we may live together with Him (1 Thessalonians 5:9-10).
Unlike our earthly bosses, our God understands that growth and progress take time. As a father is to his son, our heavenly Father does not exasperate us, but nurtures us in training and instruction (Ephesians 6:4). If we are new or young in the faith, we need not fear or worry about falling. Like newborn babies, we ought instead to crave for pure spiritual milk so we may grow up in our salvation (1 Peter 2:2).
God knows what is good for us and will not give us solid food when we are not ready (1 Corinthians 3:2). We must, however, eventually grow up in spiritual maturity, just as a baby grows up to consume solid food. Sadly, however, some of us by this time ought to be teachers, but we fail to rise up to the appointment (Hebrews 5:12-13).
Rather than remain in infancy to constantly need the elementary truths of God’s word, therefore, let us pave our ways to grow and progress steadily, for anyone who lives on milk is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. Whether we are new by appointment, say to a ministry, or new in the faith, let us familiarize the basics quickly, yet without rush, that we may not need to start over. Grow up and begin taking solid food so we can distinguish the good from evil through the constant study and use of God’s word (Hebrews 5:14; 6:1).
Dear Lord, help us live above worldly expectations to regain our grounds in handling things according to our ability. Teach and instruct us as we look deep into Your word that we may gradually grow out of immaturity, and be trained to distinguish good from evil. Lay us on a firm foundation Lord, so we may not again and again fall prey to our sinful nature, but rise up to the appointment when the time arrives for us to lead.
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